The Delta Grassroots Caucus (DGC) is a broad coalition of grassroots leaders in the eight-state Delta region. DGC is also a founding partner of the Economic Equality Caucus,
which advocates for economic equality across the USA.

New Markets Tax Credit Extension; & on Another Note, Thanks Again to Sponsors

Posted on August 11, 2009 at 10:13 AM

The New Markets Tax Credit is a beneficial initiative for economic development in the Delta region, and we include below information from the New Markets Tax Credit Coalition. Enterprise Corporation of the Delta/HOPE will have a prominent speaker at our Sept. 15-16 conference–either Bill Bynum or Alan Branson–and they are among the most knowledgeable people anywhere on the NMTC. The ECD/Hope representative will be speaking at the Senate session, Sept. 16, 2009, Senate Dirksen building Room SD G11, 8:30 a.m. to noon.

We received an informative update from Clifton Avant of Entergy, one of the long-time Delta regional leaders, and would like to convey that information.

Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), and Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME), have joined in a bipartisan effort and introduced the New Markets Tax Credit Extension Act of 2009 (S.1583). This bill would extend the NMTC for five years and provide $5 billion in annual NMTC allocation authority. The bill would also permit this Credit to offset the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT), thus granting NMTC the same consideration under AMT as Low Income Housing Tax Credit, Historic Tax Credits and other federal tax credits.

Earlier, Rep. Richard Neal (D-MA) and Rep. Patrick Tiberi (R-OH) joined in a similar bipartisan effort in to introduce the House version of the New Markets Tax Credit Extension Act of 2009 (HR 2628).

If you wish to weigh in with Congress regarding this legislation, we would ask you to contact Their website is at We would like to convey some key facts about this legislation:

• A wide range of community development entities (CDEs), investors, public officials and business leaders support this legislation. Many Members of Congress will be back home in the August recess, and this will be a good opportunity to invite them to visit a NMTC-financed business to see the impact firsthand. The NMTC has great potential for expansion in the Delta region.

• The legislation would generate over $25 billion in new private investment in lower income rural and urban communities across the country.

• The New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC), authorized in the Community Renewal Tax Relief Act of 2000, was designed to stimulate investment and economic growth in low-income communities that are traditionally overlooked by conventional capital markets. The NMTC does this by providing investors with a seven-year, 39 percent federal tax credit for investments made through investment vehicles known as Community Development Entities (CDEs). The CDEs use the capital raised with the NMTC to finance loans and investments in businesses and economic development projects in low-income areas.

• Up to now, more than $14 billion has been invested in low income communities thanks to the NMTC and CDEs are using this capital to finance a wide variety of economic development initiatives and businesses. NMTC financed projects range from a small faith-based CDE financing a new childcare facility, to a statewide CDE financing a solar power manufacturer that brought 1,500 new ‘green jobs’ to a low income community in New Mexico, to a CDE affiliated with a minority bank financing the only free standing health care clinic in Harlem. Bill Bynum and our ECD/Hope colleagues can cite progress in the Delta region. There is great potential for more utilization of the NMTC in our region. These and other NMTC financed projects have bolstered local economies, increased economic opportunity, created jobs, and improved the lives of many Americans.

• The NMTC Coalition recently released its 2009 NMTC Progress Report which documents survey data collected from CDE that received NMTC awards from Rounds I through V. The report found that CDEs are continuing to issue Qualified Equity Investments (QEIs) at a rapid pace; are offering patient, flexible financing products not otherwise available in the market; and are investing in areas with multiple factors of high economic distress.

By all reports the NMTC has succeeded in stimulating new investment and economic growth in low-income communities. Thanks again to Clifton Avant and other leaders of the New Markets Tax Coalition for sending along this information.

We would also like to thank ECD/HOPE for being one of our major cosponsors for the Sept. 15-16, 2009.

ON A SEPARATE NOTE—THANKS AGAIN TO SPONSORS FOR SEPTEMBER 15-16, 2009 CONFERENCE IN WASHINGTON, DC. We can never thank people too much, so we would also like to take this opportunity to thank the people who have thus far been sponsors:

LEAD SPONSOR—Nucor Yamato Steel and Nucor Steel of Arkansas, Blytheville, Arkansas


ECD/Hope (headquarters in Jackson, Mississippi, but active across Louisiana, Arkansas and Mississippi)

Housing Assistance Council, Washington, DC

Inspire Hope Institute (Chair, Laymon Jones)

Mississippi County Equal Opportunity Commission (Blytheville, Arkansas)

McGehee Industrial Foundation, McGehee, Arkansas


Entergy Corp.

Foundation for the Mid South (based in Jackson, Mississippi but active throughout Louisiana, Arkansas and Mississippi)

Desha County Judge Mark McElroy

City of Carbondale, Illinois

Edgenics Corp., a national company led by Dr. Bob Dansby that is active in expanding broadband access in the Delta

Dumas, Arkansas Chamber of Commerce

Heifer International

G.A. Wildman of Alabama

Southern Illinois Delta Empowerment Zone

Thanks—Lee Powell, Mississippi Delta Grassroots Caucus (202) 360-6347